God vigorously uses Marvin's musical talent, but much more than that, he uses his heart. A heart that He has developed in this contemporary gospel artist over the years. Truly, the only thing greater than Marvin's voice is his love for Jesus, his family, and the body of Christ to which he ministers.
Marvin has seven recordings to his credit. His latest offering is "MARVIN'S BEST." As always, there's a touch of jazz, hip-hop, light pop, and of course, the traditional gospel music foundation upon which Christian music rests. He has made sure his projects provide something special for every listening ear while maintaining the integrity of the call!
With CLASSIC HYMNS, the sixth recording, Marvin touched a striking cord with the community of his origin. He combined the gracefulness of three-part harmony and the rhythm of the African-American religious experience to present a toe-tapping, hand-clapping celebration of joy! Matthews' mother, Mrs. Florence Matthews says, "This is the album I always wished you would make...I like this!" One industry person has stated, "Marvin Matthews is the music industry's best-kept secret." That's high praise indeed for someone who once thought he wasn't cut out for a career in music.
Marvin initially planned a career as an attorney. He pursued pre-law at St. John's College in Santa Fe, New Mexico, before transferring to Wayland Baptist University in Plainview, Texas. "Everybody I knew as a kid growing up could sing or play an instrument," he says, "so I didn't think I was anything out of the ordinary." But Marvin is hardly ordinary. He began studying music at age eight. His credits since then include the following. He started the first gospel choir at his junior high school in D.C.; toured Romania at 18; was featured soloist with the world-famous Spurrlows; sang contemporary gospel music in opera houses throughout Europe; electrified the Philippines on Martin After Dark; and the list goes on.
In recent years, he has ministered in some of the finest churches in America, toured Korea, performed concerts in Israel, and led Christian workers in praise and worship at various conferences. He has appeared on several TV shows including Cornerstone TV in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, Daystar TV's Tentmakers in Dallas, Texas, and Swan's Place with Dennis Swanberg. Marvin has been featured on Bill & Gloria Gaither's Homecoming videos singing solos on "So Glad" and "Sweet, Sweet Spirit". Recently at the Christian Artists Seminar in Estes Park, Colorado, Marvin shared the stage with several well-known artists. His offering was so well received that the imposing audience responded with a rousing standing ovation!
His second "LIVE CONCERT VIDEO," which was taped at First Baptist Church of Euless in their new sanctuary, featured some of the hottest Nashville studio players and singers, the finest Dallas studio singers, the exciting voices of the First Baptist Church of Euless Adult Choir, and the world-renowned First Baptist Church of Hamilton Park Male Chorus. This live concert presents an exciting evening of worship, and old-fashioned-down-home fun!
Family is very important to Mr. Matthews. The spiritual life of his children has often fueled his desire to be an effective communicator. He explains: "I was sitting in church with my family one Sunday, when I looked down to find my children, Leslee and Aaron, sound asleep. We were singing hymns at the time, and I couldn't believe they would sleep through these wonderful songs. After the service, I asked them why, and they said the songs were boring. I realized then that kids today, just like kids 20 years ago, aren't necessarily tuned into the music their parents love. So I set out to find a way to make the timeless messages in the old hymns appeal to young ears." As a result his fifth project HYMNS FOR HIM was born. It is a timeless treasury of standard hymns set to contemporary stylings!
With HYMNS FOR HIM, Marvin succeeded beautifully. He took old standards, including AMAZING GRACE, CROWN HIM WITH MANY CROWNS, and BLESSED ASSURANCE, and revamped them for a younger audience, all while not excluding the mature audience to which Marvin's mother belongs. Marvin stretched himself artistically to maximize the range of his honey-smooth tenor voice. Not that vocal gymnastics are out the norm for Marvin. It has been said that he possesses the range of Whitney Houston, the passion of Luther Vandross and the agility of Al Jarreau.
Marvin began his professional solo career in 1988 with the release of his first national album KEEP SAILING ON and has performed in all 50 states and three world continents. He has appeared at the National Children's Pastors' Conferences (CPC), J&J Music Conferences, Ohio Christian Educator's Association, and was spotlighted at the Azusa conferences with Bishop Carlton Pearson. Marvin was featured performer at the Summer Olympics in Barcelona, Spain, and Atlanta, Georgia, sponsored by the Lay Witnesses for Christ International. For the third time in a row, he has been asked to be the featured performer at the 2000 Summer Olympics in Sydney, Australia
A tireless concert artist, Marvin has worked with a host of popular artists including Debby Boone, Andrae Crouch, Bob Hope, Mark Lowry, Little Richard, Karen Wheaton, Deniece Williams, and CeCe Winans. He has been featured on most major Christian networks, including TBN and CBN. Marvin has had extensive exposure on BET Network through guest appearances on "THE BOBBY JONES GOSPEL SHOW." His exuberant personality combined with his unique vocal talent and compassionate spirit crosses all socio-economic and racial lines. He's a natural, whether on a concert stage performing with a symphony or standing in front of a church congregation with his soundtracks. His enthusiasm envelops the listener.
In many ways, the latest albums MARVIN'S BEST, CLASSIC HYMNS, AND HYMNS FOR HIM are a reflection of the artist's roots and the priceless memories of family. There are vivid recollections of his mother singing hymns to herself when he was very young. He laughingly notices the 90's pop sounds resonating from his childrens' rooms. He believes the songs his mother sang gave her the strength she needed to raise six children alone. He believes the songs his children will hear and sing will give them foundations for life!
Marvin's desire is to affect change and provide a place of joy where hopelessness has prevailed. He really sings because he's happy and because he's free (from HIS EYE IS ON THE SPARROW--CLASSIC HYMNS). He will continue to challenge himself by expanding his repertoire. As always, the music he writes and sings will be uplifting and encouraging for his audience and audiences to come. Brace yourself for one of the most exciting musical rides of your life - the fiery music of MARVIN MATTHEWS, where artistry turns into ministry!!
Check out the artist's website:
1. No, Not One
2. Blessed Assurance
3. What A Friend We Have In Jesus
4. Come Thou Fount
5. Near The Cross
6. Were You There-Gayle Mayes-West, Soloist
7. Leaning On The Everlasting Arms
8. Go Tell It On The Mountain
9. Great Is Thy Faithfulness-Angela Wright-Primm, Soloist
10. The Glory Medley
11. Amazing Grace
12. His Eye Is On The Sparrow